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Student Success Initiatives at MCTC

Posted on: July 1st, 2014 by insidemctc No Comments

Students collaborating.New initiatives aimed at improving student success have shown strong results, according to a recent report released by the College’s office of Strategy, Planning and Accountability (SPA). Educational equity and student success comprise the College’s strategic priorities, and the four initiatives tracked in this report are specifically aimed at meeting those priorities.

AME

The African American Educational Empowerment Program (AME) and student center was founded in 2011 by dedicated students who brought a national concept to this Minneapolis campus. AME is comprised of four programs, and the AME student center is available for homework help, classroom collaboration and community building. College research showed students using the AME center—particularly male students—were significantly more likely to complete courses and remain enrolled in the College than those not using the center.

Accelerated English (ENGA)

Accelerated English courses combining developmental English with college-level work were offered for the first time in 2013. The research found students needing developmental English instruction were significantly more successful when enrolled in the combined course, passing at a rate similar to students who tested directly into college-level English. Furthermore, these students completed their college English requirement in one semester instead of two.

English Instructor Michael Kuhne explains that students may face any number of outside factors, so success in developmental courses may take place in addition to or in spite of factors like inconsistent child care, health issues, addiction, family illness and so on.
“The students who succeed in these courses not only leave with more academic confidence, they understand the demands of college a bit better and are better able to plan accordingly,” said Kuhne. “They know how to create study and support groups. They gain clarity, both about why they are in college and how they will succeed in college.”

Embedded Advising

Embedded advisors working specifically within College academies began providing integrated advising to students in 2011. Research found students who saw their appointed academy advisor in their first semester at MCTC were almost twice as likely to continue at MCTC for a second year than students who did not see an advisor. Data will be further analyzed in the coming year to determine whether integrated advising has a positive effect on timely graduation as well as the effect on retention.

Statway

Statway, a Carnegie Foundation initiative designed to help community college students complete a college-level math course with less frustration and lower dropout rates than traditional college algebra, finished its first year of implementation this spring. MCTC research found that students in the accelerated, experience-based math alternative were between three and five times more likely to enroll in the subsequent math class the following term compared to developmental math students not enrolled in Statway. “Students enrolled in Statway this year built a strong community,” said Carmen Buhler, Mathematics instructor and one of three Statway instructors at the College. “In light of the successes of the first year of operation, we are looking forward to a second year of Statway courses.”

These initiatives, aimed at increasing success in the classroom as well as graduation or transfer rates of participating students, are only a few instances of efforts at the College to empower students to be successful inside and outside the classroom.

AME Annual Banquet to be Held March 21

Posted on: March 4th, 2014 by insidemctc No Comments

MCTC AME programYou are invited to the African American Education Empowerment Program’s (AME) annual Black History Month Banquet held at MCTC. The banquet is an opportunity to recognize the success of AME and MCTC students, the MCTC community and the greater Twin Cities community. The banquet will take place on Friday, March 21 from 7–8:30 p.m. with check-in and networking beginning at 6:30 p.m.

The keynote speaker for this event will be Dr. Timothy Childs, president of TLC Precision Wafer Technology and head of the TLC Foundation. Dr. Childs was recommended by Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton to meet with President Barack Obama to discuss the topic of innovative technologies and his involvement with “at risk” students from North Minneapolis in 2011. Read more here.

The banquet is free and open to the MCTC and greater Twin Cities community. It will also feature music led by AME students and a “soul food” meal.

For more information about the banquet, or to RSVP to attend, please email AME@minneapolis.edu no later than Monday, March 17. 

About AME
The African American Education Empowerment Program (AME) consists of four distinct programs to create opportunities for the educational success of students of color who are attending Minneapolis Community and Technical College (MCTC). Each AME program contributes to the retention, graduation and personal growth of students and empowers them to develop leadership skills through their education, mentoring opportunities and involvement in the college community, society, nation and world. Learn more here.

About TLC Wafer Technology
TLC Precision Wafer Technology is a leader in providing quality reliable and innovative high performance millimeter-wave products to customers in the millimeter-wave and high-speed photonic industries. This includes military and commercial telecommunications, security and automotive electronic and other applications. http://www.tlcprecision.com/

About the TLC Foundation
TLC Education Foundation has evolved over the last 10 years into an organization that helps “at-risk” students and families to develop academic confidence, to understanding the importance of education and to develop and implement paths to move college aspirations into reality. http://tlceducationfoundation.org/

MCTC Celebrates Black History Month with College, Community Partnerships

Posted on: February 10th, 2014 by insidemctc No Comments

Spirit and Soul exhibitIn celebrating community, teaching history and heading into the future, MCTC joins its partners throughout the community in celebrating Black History Month. Black History Month is designated for the remembrance of important people and events in the history of the African diaspora. MCTC takes great pride in the study of African diaspora. The College, in conjunction with its African American Education Empowerment Program (AME) and the Basilica of St. Mary, takes special note of black history with celebratory events and activities throughout the month. View our Black History Month page for a full list of events happening in February.

AME has been creating opportunities for the educational success of students of color who are attending MCTC since 2011. Each of four distinct AME programs contributes to the retention, graduation and personal growth of students and empowers them to develop leadership skills through education, mentoring opportunities and involvement in the college community, society, nation and world. Black History Month provides students the opportunity to design creative ways to gather their peers and celebrate. AME is hosting multiple events this month, and culminating their celebrations with their annual celebration banquet and community shoe donation distribution. Click here for a full list of events.

The Basilica of St. Mary has been MCTC’s neighbor for the 35+ years MCTC has inhabited its current location on Hennepin Ave. and Loring Park. As long-standing partners in community service, MCTC and the Basilica are partnering this year to host Black History Month events including an art exhibit showcasing the work of MCTC students, and a celebratory concert. Click here for a full list of events.

Recognizing the myriad interests of its diverse population of students, MCTC recently introduced an Associate in Arts with Emphasis in African Diaspora Studies program. In this innovative program, students analyze the history, politics and cultures of African people globally and locally. Students explore the experiences of the descendants of the Transatlantic Slave Trade, recent immigrants from Africa to the U.S. and Europe, and many other aspects of African diasporic lives around the globe. It’s an exciting addition to the more than 130 programs of study at MCTC.

Part of the African Diaspora Studies program is a summer field-study course, “Race in America: Then and Now.” The six-credit field study course is done in partnership with the Higher Education Consortium for Urban Affairs and takes place in June each year. Students explore the philosophy, practice and historical implications of the U.S. Civil Rights Movement of the 1950s and 1960s and how these past struggles are inextricably linked to current struggles around race, class and inequality. The course is based at Jackson State University in Jackson, Miss. and includes multi-day field trips to sites in Alabama, Tennessee and Louisiana.

We invite you to explore black history with us at MCTC!

MCTC’s AME Wins MnSCU Diversity Award

Posted on: June 3rd, 2013 by mctc No Comments

MnSCU recognizes outstanding educational programs and services

MnSCU awards AMEThe MCTC chapter of the African American Educational Empowerment Program (AME) received a Diversity Award from Minnesota State Colleges and Universities (MnSCU) for Outstanding Student Organization at the recent annual joint meeting held May 30–31 at Normandale Community College. AME consists of multiple programs that create opportunities for the educational success of students of color at MCTC. Each AME program contributes to the retention, graduation and personal growth of students and empowers them to develop leadership skills through their education, mentoring opportunities and involvement in the college community, society, nation and world.

Diversity awards recognize programs and individuals for fostering a diverse faculty, staff and student body and providing quality services and support. “We take pride in providing an extraordinary education for Minnesotans from all backgrounds, and that requires diversity on campus,” said Whitney Harris, MnSCU chief diversity officer and manager of the Educational Equity Task Force at MCTC. “Our colleges and universities serve more students of color than any other provider of higher education in Minnesota, and we serve more low-income students than all of the state’s other higher education options combined. It gives me great pleasure to recognize the outstanding work being done throughout the system that allows us to fulfill this vital role.”

“It’s important to give credit for this award to the hard work of the students and peer advisors within AME,” said Dr. Jesse Mason, psychology instructor and AME program coordinator. “The students work with the programming and planning of the AME initiative, and we can thank them for this success.” AME programs include Student African American Brotherhood/Brother2Brother (SAAB/B2B), Student African American Sisterhood/Sister2Sister (SAAS), Student Success in Transition Education Program (STEP) and African American Male Parity in Educational Success (AMP). AME was nominated for the MnSCU Diversity Award by MCTC math instructor Marcella Jones.

“The MnSCU Strategic Framework calls for our colleges and universities to ensure access to an extraordinary education for all Minnesotans,” said Doug Knowlton, MnSCU vice chancellor of Academic and Student Affairs. “That requires innovation and excellence in everything we do—from the classroom throughout every service we provide for our students. Although tremendous work is going on at every one of the 31 MnSCU colleges and universities, I am especially pleased to recognize the distinguished examples being honored today.” Read the MnSCU press release here.